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Margarita Chicken with Mango & Avocado Salsa

Margarita Chicken with Mango & Avocado Salsa

Football season is almost officially here.  Like so many others, I love football – for the team (Go Steelers), the sport, and the food! While buffalo wings with an ice-cold beer are awesome, my go-to football meal is actually Margarita Chicken with Mango & Avocado Salsa.  It might sound strange, but hear me out!

There is something magically fabulous about firing up the grill and having the husband perfectly cook marinated chicken while I quickly chop up a few fresh ingredients, steam rice in the cooker, and in just a few minutes – WHAM! A healthy, beautiful, fresh, and oh-so-mouth-watering meal is done & we’re ready for some FOOTBALL!  Plus, any leftovers are tossed together and eaten an hour later with tortilla chips, in between trash talking.

Ok, football aside, this is also one of my top-raved-about meals that I prepare when we invite friends over for dinner.  Because it is so easy and can be made almost completely in advance, it is ideal for when serving guests.  Am I the only one who gets stressed over having to shower, clean the house, make sure everyone is dressed, and prepare dinner?!  Plus, this meal looks like a lot of work but really isn’t, and pleases everyone.

We actually first had Margarita Chicken at my sister’s house.  She made it for my husband & me & life has never been the same.  I can actually still remember the way it tasted that first night, and like a good marriage, it has only gotten better with practice & time.  It has grown to be a meal that we’re known for and is often requested by our kids!

Recipe adapted from Southern Living.

Margarita Marinated Chicken

Marinating the chicken takes less than 3 minutes to prep and is then covered & refrigerated until you’re ready to cook it.  The longer you marinate it, the more flavorful the chicken will be, BUT do not let it go too long or the fibers in the meat will start to break down & it will not be as yummy.

Grilled Margarita Chicken

We prefer Basmati rice and cook it in our Aroma Rice Cooker to perfection – fluffy, but not mushy.  Grilling times for your chicken will vary, so I recommend using an internal thermometer to make sure it is done.  Be sure to let your chicken rest before you cut it – that way all the juices will have time to reintegrate into the meat & your chicken will be extra moist.

Mango & Avocado Salsa

To make my salsa prep time extra quick & easy, I dice my red pepper, onion, and cilantro in advance, usually right after I marinate the chicken.  Then I peel, dice, & combine the remaining ingredients while the chicken is grilling.

Margarita Chicken with Mango & Avocado Salsa

We layer our chicken on top of the rice & then pile it high with salsa.  Grab a fork, a tall glass of limeade, and enjoy!

Margarita Chicken with Mango & Avocado Salsa

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 27 minutes

Yield: 4 - 6 servings

Margarita Chicken with Mango & Avocado Salsa

Margarita marinated chicken served with rice and fresh mango & avocado salsa. An easy & beautiful dish that's perfect for a weeknight meal or to impress when having company over.


    Chicken Marinade:
  • 2 c. liquid Margarita Mix, non-alcoholic
  • 1 c. Canola Oil
  • 2 Limes, juiced
  • 1 c. fresh Cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 4 - 6 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • Mango & Avocado Salsa:
  • 1 Mango, peeled & diced
  • 2 Avocados, peeled & diced
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, seeds & membranes removed, diced
  • 2 tbsp Red Onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh Cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Lime, juiced
  • Additional Ingredients:
  • 4 c. cooked Long Grain White Rice (Basmati, Jasmine, etc)


    Marinated Chicken:
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together lime juice, Margarita mix, oil, cilantro, salt, & red pepper flakes. Add raw chicken, cover & refridgerate for 2 - 6 hours.
  2. Mango & Avocado Salsa:
  3. In a large bowl, combine mango, avocado, red pepper, onion, and cilantro. Drizzle with oil & lime juice. Gently stir to coat ingredients evenly. Set aside.
  4. Heat grill to medium. Remove chicken breasts from marinade and grill for 6 minutes on each side, until juices run clear & internal temperature reaches 165°. Allow meat to rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Slice chicken breasts against the grain and serve with rice & salsa.


Adapted from a recipe in Southern Living magazine.


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{ 8 comments… add one }
  • Christine November 18, 2015, 1:45 am

    Served it on a bed of greens instead of rice. Super delicious! Healthy! A big hit with guests.

  • Leslie Horton August 17, 2013, 11:41 am

    Yummy! And yes, love the idea of prepping before the stress of everyone’s arrival!

    • Alecia Stanley August 23, 2013, 11:20 am

      @Leslie – I’m always in favor of cutting down on the stress :). Hope you’ll make it & let us know how you like it! I bet even H would devour it. This is one of the girls’ favorites!

  • Chris August 14, 2013, 3:44 pm

    Reading through this is making me majorly crave this meal!!!

  • Jodi August 14, 2013, 1:39 pm

    OH.MY.GOODNESS> This is one of our all time favs. We LOVE this recipe and have lost count about a hundred times over how much we’ve cooked it since Alecia first posted it on Savings and Stewardship. Thank you thankyou Alecia! If you’ve not tried this, you really are missing out. Do it this weekend!

    • Alecia Stanley August 14, 2013, 2:01 pm

      @Jodi – YAY!! I’m so glad you guys have liked it & made it so much!! It really is so easy & delicious! We love how light & fresh it feels when you eat it, yet you’re not hungry again an hour later! Definitely a Top 3 Favorite in our house.

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